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CAMPAIGN: Re-Open The Black Cap Pub

On 16th April 2015, this iconic, popular and very busy LGBT Pub was closed by Faucet Inns to convert into high end apartments and a restaurant. Since then Campaigners have:

  • Prevented the sale of the pub going through to the wrong sort of buyer for the second time.
  • Won an Asset of Community Value order for the entire premises, then won a sale moratorium.
  • Through our highly successful Vigils and Press, ensured considerable public pressure stays firmly on the secretive Jersey registered pub owner and freeholder, Kicking Horse Ltd.
  • Read how you and us working together will re-open The Black Cap OUR VISION

For Sale or Lease, Black Cap Pub, 171 Camden High Street, London NW1 7JYA

Yes, the Black Cap Foundation is advertising our Pub on the open market!

And to ensure that this time, silver-tongued property agents can no longer get away with misrepresentation and deception to fool the buyers, and Kicking Horse only get hear from the right sort of Consortiums or PubCos, we have created the Unauthorised Estate Agent Sales Brochure for The Black Cap.

It discusses who the LGBT+ community is, our size, and what we want, and that we are business-focused and constructive whilst determined to protect our culture, arts, and space.

The Black Cap is a very attractive opportunity for the right PubCo!  Help Black Cap Foundation and Kicking Horse attract the right PubCo partners as soon as possible.

The Unauthorised Estate Agent Sales Brochure is at:

The explanation is at:

Spread the word far and wide!  And PubCos, if you want to buy or lease The Black Cap, then download the Sales Brochure and get in touch.

A Message from Black Cap Foundation to Kicking Horse Ltd and their UK Representative

Dear Sirs,

We are sure that you would like to receive some income from this pub as much as London’s LGBT+ Community would like to see it re-opened.
It is entirely likely (and we say this with good reason) that we may be approached by prospective PubCos before your agent or representative is approached. There has been a very strong pickup of our Unauthorised Estate Agent Sales Brochure, viewable at:

The ex-leaseholder company (newly re-registered name withheld), previously known as Ruth and Robinson Ltd, have declined to give us your contact details citing ‘commercial confidentiality’. This would appear to help no-one, least of all Kicking Horse.

If in the future you would like us to send to you possible PubCos with very real visions and business plans that will help you earn what is due to you out of The Black Cap, can we ask if you could ask your representative to get in touch with us at at their earliest possible convenience.

We are well connected, commercial and approachable, and we believe we can find more of the right kind of exciting and progressive LGBT+ focused buyers more quickly than your representative can.

We look forward to a very positive conversation with you and your UK representative shortly.

Yours faithfully
Chris Clark
Program Director
Black Cap Foundation
Company Number 10198719

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Successes to date

  • Assembled an effective Campaigner team, achieved substantial publicity
  • Unwound the sale of the pub
  • Dismantled the Restaurant contract
  • Won an Asset of Community Value Order
  • Won the Faucet Inn/Developer appeal against the ACV
  • Persuaded Kicking Horse to put The Black Cap on the Market
  • Won a 6 month Selling Moratorium to buy the Pub
  • Won the support of ALL other LGBT Community businesses in Camden

Latest news


11th December 2015 We are delighted to receive this message of support from Clare Summerskill. For more messages of support go to ‘More’ on this homepage.

As a lesbian performer, an LGBTQ historian, and a former customer of the Black Cap, I greatly support the current efforts that are being made to keep this venue as a public house and place of entertainment for the LBGTQ and wider community. Safe spaces for marginalised communities within a city are of key importance for those within those populations since they provide places where we can meet other people like us, and thereby confirm and celebrate our own identities in a society where we can still feel, and be treated as, outsiders. In addition, artistic LGBTQ spaces in this day and age need to be preserved and supported by any means possible so that commercialism does not overshadow creativity.

Clare Summerskill.

Writer and Performer.

Elizabeth Jameson
1st October 2015

WELL DONE!! Just under quarter of a page in this week’s Ham n High – Page 17 – the article reads QUOTE A four-hour Halloween vigil was held outside a popular Camden Town pub on Saturday calling for it to reopen. The Black Cap was an iconic venue for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community before it closed suddenly in April. Nigel Harris, director of the Camden LGBT Forum said cases of social isolation had increased since it shut. He said: “Since it closed we’ve seen a number of people accessing our services. It (The Black Cap) was their family, and they don’t feel comfortable going elsewhere. He said Saturday afternoon’s vigil, and a petition containing 8,200 signatures, showed the strength of feeling about the venues. “It shows a potential buyer that there’s a lot of interest in the venue” he said. The Black Cap is on the market, and is owned by Kicking Horse Ltd. Mr Harris said supporters are keen to put a community bid together to buy the venue, or find a sympathetic buyer who could restore the pub to its former glory UNQUOTE


How to get involved

  • Come to our highly successful Saturday Vigils, see the flyer and spread the word
  • Help us campaign with a personal donation to (opens in new window)
  • Become a Black Cap Foundation Shareholder – look out for details shortly
  • Write to your MP and London Assembly Member, ask them to contact Pubs Minister Rt Hon Marcus Jones MP
  • Ask other LGBT+ Pubs and Leisure Spaces to speak out on our behalf

Share your memories 

Here’s a little history behind the Black Cap we know & love – it was originally called The Mother BlackCap after a local legend concerning a witch and had that name, according to licensing records, as early as 1751. In the winter of 1965/66 it became known as a safe place for gay people. Eventually becoming the iconic Black Cap as it is known today. Until April 2015, when closed without notice, the Black Cap continued to be a safe place having launched many a career – Lily Savage, Barry Cryer, Bob Monkhouse, Rodd Hudd amongst other famous faces were often seen thereon Sundays. This architecturally fabulous safe venue is part of the colorful melting pot of people that make Camden Town such a wonderful, funky place. People come to Camden from all over the world.

Please reinstate the Black Cap – Camden just isn’t the same without it.

Elizabeth Jameson

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We are supporting 


Golden Lion - Camden
MCC North London - Camden

The Black Cap – A Timeline since April 2015

An interactive timeline recording The Black Cap’s closure and the battle to re-open it is available on the Make Public website.  To view (opens in new window) simply go to:

And maximise the timeline on your PC screen.  (Not mobiles unfortunately)

The Black Cap – The ‘No Alternative Uses’ defence

The Black Cap Pub is a single entity.

A continuous line of argument by developers has been it is fine to sell off parts of the pub floor by floor, and anyway there are now two adjacent alternative spaces for Camden’s LGBT+ Community.  This sets out why their view is simply wrong:

Our Vision

There are two documents:.

Small Ads

Exciting sales opportunity!

Iconic and popular LGBT+ destination Pub for sale or lease.  Central Camden Town location, 150m from Underground station.  Good profits history serving London’s LGBT+ Community.

Full details here.  Enquire today!

~ advert placed by Black Cap Foundation

Investment Case

Our Business Plan is here:

Two leading approaches are being considered:

  • Working with the right kind of partner taking a pub lease (10 - 25 years)
  • A consortium buyout with Black Cap Foundation as a stakeholder

We will provide more detail on this in coming weeks.

Black Cap Feb 2016 Survey

This sixteen question 184 respondent survey researched how people thought about the Black Cap's history and culture, and what they wanted to see in a re-opened pub.  The results are to be used in shaping our document 'Black Cap Reprised - What Campaigner Success Will Look Like'

You can download the Survey, Press Release, and original data here.

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